The oocytes of saturniid moths take up proteins selectively from the blood. The distribution of blood proteins in the ovary during protein uptake was investigated by staining 2 µ sections of freeze-dried ovaries with fluorescein-labeled antibodies. The results indicate that blood proteins occur primarily in the intercellular spaces of the follicle cell layer, in association with a brush border at the surface of the oocyte, and within the oocyte in the yolk spheres. That proteins derived from the blood are associated with the yolk spheres was confirmed by isolating these bodies and showing that lysis, which can be induced by any of a number of mechanical means, causes them to release immunologically defined proteins known to be derived from the blood. That the level of blood proteins in the cytoplasm is low relatively to that in the yolk spheres was confirmed by the observation that the yellow pigments associated with several blood proteins, although conspicuous in the yolk spheres, are not visible in the translucent layer of centrifuged oocytes. From these and previous physiological observations, it is proposed that blood proteins reach the surface of the oocyte by an intercellular route, that they combine with some component of the brush border, and that they are transformed into yolk spheres by a process akin to pinocytosis.

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